The 10 Worst In-Flight Movies

Posted May 6, 2008 by Carl Unger

In a bold move, American Airlines is soliciting opinions from its paying customers so the carrier can offer a better flying experience.  The topic here is in-flight entertainment, and American has set up a website that allows people to vote on movies that will be shown in the main cabin.  Of course, the process is a bit clunky, so I'll just paste the details here:Airplane_3

"Selection of movies must be done at least 60 days prior to a movie playing on board. The polling will be open for seven (7) days each month."

So basically you need to show up roughly two months before you fly, and within the unspecified seven days of that month.  Good luck! All kidding aside, it's nice to have an airline making decisions based on customer input (because Lord knows none of us asked for pay-as-you-go sandwiches, right?).  To save AA some trouble, however, I've compiled a list of 10 movies that should never be shown on an airplane, no matter how many people vote for them.  Here they are:

10. Airplane!

Surely, this cannot really be on the list! (And don't call me … oh, I can't do it).  However, a movie about inept pilots, stewardesses, and air traffic controllers doesn’t exactly inspire confidence when you're soaring above the clouds.  That said, of all the movies that will follow on this Top 10, Airplane! is one of the few I'd like to watch.  By the way, is there anyone onboard who knows how to fly a plane?

9. 9 ½ weeks

Maybe a plane full of dudes would want to watch this, but a plane full of regular people would likely rather skip this steamy Kim Basinger/Mickey Rourke travesty.  This is about as inappropriate as it gets, on so many levels.  Hide the kids!

8. The Exorcist

Hide the kids!  Again!  And hide everyone else, too, because this movie is wack!

7. Snakes on a Plane

Let's repeat the title, slowly: Snakes. On. A. Plane.  If you're on a plane, what do you typically not want on the plane with you?  Snakes!  And this movie.  Awful.Snakesonaplane_3

6. Turbulence

This Ray Liotta/Lauren Holly "film," about a stewardess who must fly a plane overrun by criminals, fend off a maniacal serial killer, and get to L.A. in time for Christmas, was nominated for a "Worst Reckless Disregard for Human Life and Public Property" Razzie in 1997. Sadly, it lost to…

5. Con Air

Or, more likely, it lost to Nicholas Cage's flowing mane of greasy brown hair, which was in full effect for this one.  Was John Malkovich hard up for cash when this script landed in his mailbox?

4. Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo

This movie should not be shown anywhere, at any time, for any reason, and least of all on an airplane full of people.  Gives me the creeps just thinking about it.

3. Cast Away and/or LOST Season 1

Toss-up here, as both have the "stranded on a remote tropical island" vibe going on.  Take your pick: Tom Hanks, in a shaggy beard, talking to a volleyball; or lots of generally good-looking folks, mysteriously absent shaggy beards, and a killer smoke monster.  Either way, that's not a decision you want to be making at 35,000 feet.

2. The Langoliers

This bizarre Stephen King TV miniseries involves a plane that flies through a time rift, which essentially vaporizes anyone not sleeping at the time.  Then the plane lands in Bangor, Maine, which is deserted, and where the food has no taste, the soda no fizz, and so on.  Then the Langoliers come, whatever they are, and it's all downhill from there. Again, not at 35,000 feet, thanks, and probably not ever.

1. Nightmare at 20,000 Feet

This episode of the Twilight Zone was later remade in the movie version of the classic TV show, but the original, starring William Shatner, is where it's at.  We all know the famous line, and we all know how silly the concept is, but we also all know we've looked out the window more than once and, deep in the darkest recesses of our mind, wondered if there was something on the wing.


So, what movie would you never want to see while in flight?  Use the comment field below and add to the list!

(Photos: Internet Movie Poster Awards, Badpopcorn)

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Reader Comments

I picked the wrong day to stop sniffing glue...

Posted on May 06, 2008 at 05:56 PM by Chris


Posted on May 06, 2008 at 08:41 PM by Frankie

Duuuuude. How could you leave out the two airplane-related Wesley Snipes movies at this time? Passenger 57 and Drop Zone rock!

But, you do get mad props for including The Langoliers (which by the way is seemingly in regular rotation on the Sci Fi channel).

Posted on May 07, 2008 at 09:28 AM by Stephen

What were they thinking?! Leaving out Soul Plane! Snoop is my favorite pilot ever!!

Posted on May 07, 2008 at 10:28 AM by Erin

I nominate "Coffee and Cigarettes". Or any movie for that matter that has people enjoying puff after puff of blisfful smoke, while you're trapped on a plane long enough hours for there to even be a movie.

Posted on May 07, 2008 at 12:31 PM by Avid Smoker

i am entitle to recive a free buddy pass

Posted on May 06, 2009 at 08:03 PM by radgney stone

Don't forget "Alive!" .. about the Uruguayan rugby players whose plane crashed in the Andes. When they ate up their rations in the mistaken belief a search party had spotted them, they were forced to turn to the bodies of those who died.
Horrid in-flight selection. Just eerie.

Posted on August 01, 2009 at 04:02 PM by WizeChik

and "Fearless"

Posted on January 08, 2011 at 07:23 PM by smarfling

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